My proof copy of Counting Colors arrived in the mail on Monday afternoon, more than a week before anticipated. I let out a small squeal when I opened the package and found my book, my very own creation in tangible form, all sleek and shiny.
Though I knew to expect it, holding it in my hands is, for lack of a better description, surreal. My family is excited along with me. And my writing buddies share my joy, as you can see in this photo of me with my friend Kim Love Stump, author of A Clearing in the Forest (and behind the camera Bridgett Bell Langson who recently released Finding Home: My Arf-O-Biography).
I’m sure I wore a goofy grin for a bit after opening my package, maybe not one to rival the one I wore when Little J and Little E came along, but I did feel in somewhat of a stupor.
Here was years of pain, of grief, of hope, of joy, poured into physical form. I went into the bedroom, sat down and opened the cover and began to cry. These poems between the covers brought forth fresh tears, reopened my heart to the tender memories of holding onto hope, to love, of saying goodbye again and again to potential. My mind flooded with those first days with each of my babies, the days that followed. Is it possible for a handful of pages to express the longing, the heartache, the ultimate joy of being a mother-in-waiting? Even now I struggle to put into words how I feel seeing this “baby” come to life. Will others understand what each chiseled word means? Does it matter if they do?
I do hope my words have an impact, that they allow another woman to know she is not alone, that they offer hope when it seems impossible to hold onto hope any longer, that perhaps they can offer loved ones a glimpse into the heart of someone traveling a similar road to mine. But most of all my prayer is that God will use my words for His glory.
grace for each moment, one moment at a time